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Learn stuff

I swear to you all I am not going to turn this into an app review blog. Lord knows we have enough of those already. But from time to time, a great app will come along with a clear vision, great functionality, and a wicked cool website promoting their wares. And I’m not going to dismiss such creativity; I plan on learning from it.

Winston Churchill once said, “Personally, I’m always ready to learn, although I do not always like being taught.”

church

We are taught lessons and concepts and facts in school and college, from parents hopefully, and possibly a mentor. For me personally, it’s way more fun to be an astute observer, and learn from real life experiences. I’ve learned quite a bit from app developers and designers, and picked up a few more things from the good folks at Busy Cursor Software, the makers of Minneapolis’ Train Brain App. The app was developed by Andy Atkinson and designer Nate Kadlac.

Essentially the app brings the Minneapolis Light Rail schedule to life, with a very slick User Interface. It’s hard to make train schedules look sexy, but these guys came pretty close.
brain

Most importantly , it works. But the biggest lesson I’ve learned was just how important a promotional website specific to the app is. Train Brain’s is clear and concise, looks sharp, and has a couple effective and simple features. The site basically consists of 4 sections: 1) Features, 2) Screenshots, 3) Support, 4) FAQs. That’s it. I think one of the coolest parts is their support/feedback section powered by User Voice. This allows all of their users to provide feedback or suggest ideas, and quite a few have. It’s an excellent way to stay connected with your users , so you can continually provide a rich and meaningful user experience.

With that said, we’ve secured our app domain for two years from GoDaddy for $21.74.
Now we just need content and design…

App Website – $21.74

Frypan

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Filed under advertising, app, app store, iphone, Marketing, technology

The Internet has Websites

When Al Gore invented the Internet in 1969, it was a jumbled mess of binary code, X.25 networks, bionics, and Google. At least that’s my understanding. In reality, the first internet “connection” was made through ARPANET on October 29th, 1969 between UCLA and Stanford Research Institute. There was one dude present to witness the event…and he looked like this:

ARPANET

1969 was full of historical moments; The Beatles perform their last live show, Phil Esposito becomes the first NHL Player to score 100 points in a season, Nixon becomes president, and Donald and Doris Fisher founded the GAP in San Francisco. I’m sure the importance of the ARPANET success fell somewhere between The Mayo Clinic’s first hip replacement and Seiko’s production of the first quartz watch.

Phil

The web didn’t really stumble along until about the 80s, with a website that many will remember as Cern.

Today, according to Royal Pingdom, there are almost 200 Million websites, with 31 Million new websites added alone in 2008. Well, the web just got one more (probably 35,321 more since I typed that last sentence).

Frypan Digital launched with probably the same fanfare as 1969’s Men’s Figure Skating Championship performance by Tim Wood. Obviously if you plan on building a product to sell, you must have a face for your business on the internet. I already own iWeb on the Mac, so all that was really needed was some time and $7.69 to secure a web domain from GoDaddy. I didn’t know how to use MobileMe to host multiple iWeb sites, but the fellas at New Mac User had excellent detailed steps on how to get it done.

Clearly a large company branding and marketing push is not in our budget, so I had to dig deep in the nether regions of my brain to pull out the design for the web site. The goal – a brief explanation of the business and contact information. Done.

And as you can clearly see, in comparison to Cern’s first website –

cern

Frypan’s is way cooler –

Total Annual Expenses:
$7.69

Frypan

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